Long story short, Kansas will end up drafting a quarterback, most likely Geno Smith, with Matt Barkley being an outside chance. The Chiefs do have other voids to fill, namely the WR, DL and CB positions, but they have a quarterback problem too profound to ignore for another season. With the failures of Matt Cassel and Brady Quinn, Kansas finished 2-14 for the season. They are in a sense rebuilding now, and everyone knows a good team starts with a good quarterback.
But let’s get one thing straight. Geno Smith isn’t the top talent available this year, and is by no means worthy of the number one selection. Don’t get me wrong, he amassed some impressive personal stats (4205 yards, 42 TD-6 INT, 71.2% completion**) and even became the all-time passing leader at West Virginia (11,662 yards). He turned his team into BCS National title contenders, and looked to be an early favourite for the Heisman trophy. But at the end of the day he only managed to lead the Mountaineers to a 7-5 record in the regular season. He has the skillset to succeed in the NFL, but Kansas can’t rest assured they are drafting a franchise hero like Luck or Griffin. Geno Smith simply isn’t that good, and I doubt we are going to see a repeat of what Andrew Luck did with his Colts after their own 2-14 season in 2011. His athleticism and accuracy give him the edge over this year’s quarterback class, but how far can he take the Chief’s in the long run? Only time will tell.
The truth is, this year there is no real consensus number one available. The draft is about picking up players that complement the franchise’s direction moving forward. In Kansas’s situation, that’s adding wins and maybe even a playoff appearance next season. There’s plenty of defensive options available, but drafting a quarterback gives Kansas the best chance to achieve their goals. It therefore makes perfect sense they would draft the best one available, which happens to be Geno Smith. Coupled with the Andy Reid acquisition, Geno Smith has the opportunity to work with an offensive mastermind from the get-go.
So this year isn’t the best year to be selecting number one overall. You could even say Kansas were a year too late and a year too early at the same time. We saw how well last year’s draft went, and next year’s draft is already looking like a promising one as well. This year’s draft, however, is a goldmine for teams lacking on the defensive front.
But it’s not all bad news for Kansas. The trade period always provides a great opportunity to make amendments and add to their weaknesses. Whatever happens, the fans in Kansas City can at least look forward to an upgrade next season.
Mark.A with The Cheap Shot